The Board of Directors
The South Surrey & White Rock Chamber of Commerce is pleased to share its list of Board of Directors for the 2022/2023 term.
The term of the elected Board is from July 1st to June 30th of the following year. The new board is determined at the Annual General Meeting, held prior to June 30th.
David Sexsmith, President (2022-23)
Manager of Community Relations, Hilltop Plumbing & Heating Ltd.
David Sexsmith is the Community Relations Manager for Hilltop Plumbing & Heating and has been with the business for 3 years. David moved to White Rock from Toronto 12 years ago where he had an experienced a career in various aspects of finance. His expertise in the field has led him through banking, pension management, and equity trading for three decades! Moving to White Rock was a welcome time for change as David also transitioned in to hospitality. Spending the next 8 years in hospitality and working for several restaurants allowed him to make connections with the residents of beautiful White Rock. Through these meaningful connections, David found himself in his fitting role of Community Relations Manager at Hilltop Plumbing & Heating. Having served on several Boards, Committees, and Associations during his finance career, David is looking forward to being a Director with the Chamber.
Bob Bezubiak, Vice President (2022-23)
Bob has lived in South Surrey/White Rock for the past 34 years with plans to continue to make this area his home. For the past 22 years, he has worked in White Rock in a leadership position with TD Bank. His involvement with the local business community goes back to when he first started working in the area leading and co-leading events to attract more tourists such as the Semiahmoo Bay Regatta, Annual Christmas Sail Boat Parade, TD Concerts At The Pier and as a Board Member of the previous White Rock Tourism. More recently, he organized a group of business leaders called Friends of the Pier to raise funds for the rebuild of the pier. He has served on the Economic and Investment Committee for the City of White Rock for 12 years and chaired the committee for 4 years. Community recognitions include being nominated twice as Business Person of the Year by the Chamber, three awards from PAH for supporting their fundraising efforts and by the City of White Rock for contributions to the community.
Alyona Kokanova, Secretary (2022-23)
Lawyer, Cleveland Doan LLP
Alyona is a lawyer at Cleveland Doan LLP, where she has a broad civil and commercial litigation practice ranging from contractual disputes to construction litigation, but her primary focus is on strata property law matters. She recently moved out to British Columbia, from Toronto, Ontario. Outside of the office, Alyona spends most of her weekends hiking, boxing at her local gym, or refining her bowling technique. She is an avid traveler with one of her most memorable trips being to Tokyo, Japan. Alyona has a JD from Osgoode Hall Law School and obtained her Bachelor of Arts degree from York University. She spent a semester of law school studying abroad, learning from a wide range of international lawyers at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.
Tingting Chi, CPA, CGA, Treasurer (2022-23)
Manager, Private Enterprise, MNP LLP
With over 10 years of experience providing accounting and tax services to entrepreneurs and private corporations, Tingting enjoys working with business owners in various industries including real estate and construction, transportation, and technology. She has volunteered as a mentor under the CPA Mentorship Program to provide guidance on competency development of CPA students/candidates. Tingting hopes to have meaningful contributions to the local business community through her role at the South Surrey & White Rock Chamber of Commerce.
Patricia Lapeña, Past President (2022-23)
BC Regional Director, LegalShield
Patricia was born and raised in Vancouver and has resided in White Rock for the last 20 years with her husband Carlos, and 3 stepchildren. Since 2011, she has been working as the BC Regional Director for LegalShield. Prior to that she had her own Holistic Nutritionist practice in White Rock. Her previous work experience was in the hospitality industry in Vancouver.
As LegalShield’s BC Regional Director, Patricia trains, mentors, and works with a large team in a leadership role. This position puts her in front of various groups of people whether employees, small businesses, non-profits or others to present the many benefits of LegalShield.
Patricia loves the community of White Rock. She has been a member of the South Surrey & White Rock Chamber of Commerce since 2017 and currently sits as the President of the Board of Directors. In addition to working on her highly successful business, she has other ventures within the community; facilitating networking, empowerment and soon to be the reopening of a ‘Reclaimed Vitality’ project.
Listed alphabetically by last name
Community Relations Director, Amica White Rock
Kellie grew up in Ocean Park and returned to White Rock to raise her son Marcus. She feels very lucky to love the community that she grew up in and enjoys the ability to live and work in the same town. Kellie studied Business with a focus on Marketing & Sales at Langara College where she also played basketball. During her 13 years in the Retirement Industry, she has been able to support seniors here in South Surrey/White Rock. Whether they would like to move or stay home, she tries to be a resource for them and be their support system. As the Community Relations Director at Amica White Rock for at least 4 years, she feels that it is an honour to support such incredible residents and work within such a great team. Her role also keeps her involved in the community by supporting local events and projects. She finds it such a wonderful thing to see how the community comes together for common goals. Kellie is excited to be a part of the South Surrey & White Rock Chamber of Commerce to support local businesses as well as the interest of senior residents at Amica.
Investment Advisor and Financial Planner, RBC Dominion Securities Inc.
Linda is an investment advisor and financial planner with RBC Dominion Securities. With the firm since 1999, she has more than 20 years of financial-industry experience. Her connection to the Semiahmoo Peninsula, however, spans decades.
Born in White Rock, Linda grew up in Surrey, and studied business administration – with a major in finance – at Simon Fraser University. Although her career took her to Toronto for a few years, family and community drew her back to South Surrey.
Linda has been a member of the South Surrey & White Rock Chamber of Commerce since the summer of 2017, and has enjoyed being an ambassador at several chamber events. She is also a member of the Semiahmoo Rotary Club and an advocate for women in business.
Linda is highly organized, and has been involved in the development and oversight of several major business initiatives for RBC Dominion Securities, Canada’s number-one wealth management firm. Her skills have not gone unrecognized. She has received a number of performance awards over the years for going above and beyond in her various roles with the company. Linda knows how to lead, but is also a highly competent team player.
Outside of her professional life, Linda loves to dance, catch up with friends and enjoys the outdoors. Integrity, compassion and equality are core values to Linda, and she is confident they will serve her well in representing the chamber.
Owner, Ashberry & Logan, The Art of Flowers
Ernie has been involved with many not-for-profits during his adult life. He started his volunteer work growing up in a church in Abbotsford where he sang in choirs and was involved in many social groups within the church. He also compiled many church photo albums for various churches while he owned Imagemakers Photography Studio from 1982 to 1990. This was his first business, which he sold when he became the Executive Director for the Upper Fraser Valley Neurological Society. He formed this non-profit society when his second child was born with cerebral palsy. There were no services for families who had children with disabilities. He formed a society, became the president, and shortly thereafter was asked to be the executive director of this organization. He held this position for 9 years and, during that time, he also became the Executive Director of the BC and Yukon Association for Child Development and Rehabilitation services. Most recently, he has been on the board of the White Rock BIA, first as a director and 5 years as president. In the last local election, he also ran for a position as a City Councillor. Currently, he is the president of the White Rock Pride Society, which he has been fortunate enough to help form in 2018. He has been involved in lots of fundraisers and has contributed often to all varieties of fundraisers and non-profit events.
President, Comfort Keepers
Heather Martin has many years of professional and general management experience and has used this experience to build her own successful corporation, Comfort Keepers, servicing the whole of the lower mainland and Victoria. Prior to venturing into Comfort Keepers, she worked for 18 years with a US based company assisting with public relations, acquisitions, divestitures and general administration.
Through Comfort Keepers, she is very involved in the South Surrey/White Rock community and helps organize programs and events for seniors. Comfort Keepers was awarded the 2017 Business Excellence Award from the South Surrey & White Rock Chamber of Commerce. She spends her spare time helping and volunteering with organizations like Luke 15 House and preparing and serving meals at The Door Is Open, Vancouver and Surrey Urban Missions.
Heather is the Chair for the Semiahmoo Seniors Planning Table and Co-Chair on the Burnaby Seniors Resources Society. She is also the Vice President of the Seniors Come Share Board. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in English and Psychology and is a Certified Dementia Practitioner. She resides with her family in Surrey.
Realtor and Owner, Stewart Peddemors PREC, RE/MAX Colonial Pacific Realty
Stewart Peddemors has been a Chamber Member since 1991. His time as a local business person serving as the President of the Marine Drive Merchants association, City Councillor from 1996 to 2008 and as a Local RE/MAX Agent since 2006 has prepared Stewart to be a well rounded supporter of the business communities of White Rock and South Surrey.
Advertising Manager, Peace Arch News
Steve has spent the last 30 years in media advertising, working in management with large media corporations. Over the years these opportunities have allowed Steve to work with many different businesses, where he now has knowledge in a wide range of industries. Building relationships with business people is what Steve does best, and he prides himself on working with business owners and managers to help build awareness of both their business and their brands. Steve has always maintained his 3 core values: Honesty - Accountability - Integrity in every aspect of both his personal life and business career. In his tenure with Black Press Media and the Peace Arch News, Steve has worked and volunteered with many of the non-profit groups here on the peninsula, and has supported many fund raising initiatives to help make the community a better place to live, work and raise a family.
Branch Manager, TD Ocean Park
Suneet has lived in White Rock for over 10 years. She is a Biology and Economics graduate from Simon Fraser University. She has worked in various positions within the banking industry for the last 15 years. In her current position she is the Branch Manager of local TD Ocean Park branch located in South Surrey. Suneet is passionate about supporting the community she lives in and is looking forward to supporting the economic and social well-being of South Surrey & White Rock as a Director. She is a past member of the White Rock City Economic Investments Committee. Suneet is married to her husband Andy and have two young girls Siena and Avina. The family can often be found exploring local businesses in South Surrey & White Rock and spending time at White Rock or Crescent Beach.
Executive Director, Brella Community Services Society
Louise Tremblay has over 30 years of experience in leadership roles in the private and non-for-profit sectors. Prior to joining Brella, she was concurrently the Director of Development at UNITI and a Consultant with the BC Association of Community Response Networks. She was also on the Board of Directors of Brella for 7 years, three of which she served as Chair. Louise earned a Master of Arts in Leadership from Royal Roads University where she conducted a research project on inclusive workplaces. She was the recipient of the 2017 Surrey Board of Trade Woman in Business Award for not-for-profit leadership. Her volunteering activities include working for organizations providing services to older adults and people with disabilities and translating social science books for children with learning disabilities. Louise feels honoured and privileged to be working with collaborative groups who share her passion about developing inclusive and safe communities where diverse people can thrive and experience life to its fullest potential. While Louise was born and raised in Quebec, she lived much of her adult life in Western Canada, including Edmonton and Winnipeg. She has been a resident of South Surrey/White Rock since 1993.
Jian (James) Yu
Director, Surrey White Rock Community Engagement Society
James has been a consultant in shipping and logistics industry offering services for many multi-national companies, such as MSC, Mitsui, Hapag-Lloyd, CP ships, Evergeen, Hutchison Whampoa, etc., helping them enter the Chinese market. Through more than 32 years of work, James has accumulated a wealth of experience in China's affairs, regulatory matters, market intelligence, head hunting, pre-investment analysis and marketing strategies. Being a Director of Surrey White Rock Community Engagement Society, James actively participates in community activities to spread knowledge of Canadian democracy and enhance Chinese Canadians to embrace the Canadian multicultural identity.